Suspected Killer of Indian-Origin Student Shot Dead by Kansas Police Had Criminal Record

The suspected killer of Sharath Koppu, the Indian-origin student who was shot dead at a restaurant in Kansas, was killed during a police encounter.


The suspected killer of Sharath Koppu, the Indian-origin student who was shot dead at a restaurant in Kansas, United States, earlier this month, was killed during an encounter with security personnel on July 15. The suspect, identified as Marlin Mack, had a criminal background, a local media report said.

Mack, 25, was shot dead after he shot and injured three Kansas City police officers. The exchange of fire took place when he was found by two detectives outside a motel, following which Mack shot at them using a high-powered semi-automatic rifle, the police said. He then fled to a nearby home and was killed in another exchange of fire.

Mack was first arrested in 2009 for breaking into cars in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He was detained again when he was 17 years old for bringing a gun to school, the Kansas City Star reported. He was later sentenced to prison for five years for robbing a woman at gunpoint in front of her three small children, the report added.

“At age 17 he (Mack) was pretty much a liar and misfit extraordinaire,” the publication quoted David Walker of the Tulsa Police Department, who had interviewed Mack in 2011, as saying.

Mack was released from prison in 2015, and rearrested seven months later for carrying a firearm after a former conviction of a felony. He was released in February 2017.

The Kansas Police was, however, not aware of his past conduct. He did not have a criminal record in Kansas, Captain Lionel Colon of the police department had told the Hindustan Times earlier.

Mack’s father is serving a life sentence for shooting two people in the head in 2000.

Koppu, a 25-year-old software engineer from Hyderabad who was pursuing a masters degree in computer science at the University of Missouri, was killed on July 6 during a suspected robbery bid at the restaurant where he worked. He was shot in the back when he tried to run away from the assailant.

The Kansas City Police released a CCTV footage of the suspect and announced a $10,000 reward for any information leading to the culprit. “After we released video of the suspect, we got more than 40 tips from community members. About 10 of those all identified the same person,” Kansas City Missouri Police chief Richard Smith wrote on his blog in which he talked about the police shootout with Mack.

Koppu’s family expressed happiness over Mack’s killing.

“We received the information about the shooting down of my son’s killer. We are happy that justice was done to my son so quickly. But that does not bring back my innocent son alive. He became the victim for no fault of his. But justice prevailed at last,” Sharath’s father, Ram Mohan Koppu, an employee with Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), in Hyderabad, was quoted as saying by the Indian media.

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